Common names (selected) English: flick weed, hairy bittercress, hoary bittercress, lamb’s cress, land cress, shot weed; Chinese: 碎米荠 (broken rice bran); French: cardamine hérissée, cardamine hirsute, cardamine velue, cresson de muraille, cresson de vigne; Italian: billeri commune, billeri primaticcio; German: viermänniges Schaumkraut; Portuguese: agrião-menor; Spanish: creixens de prat; mastuerzo amargo; mastuerzo de prado; mastuerzo menor
Description: Winter or summer annual
Native regions and distribution: Native to temperate and tropical Asia, Europe, and north Africa. When touched, the seeds burst explosively, allowing the plant to spread rapidly in disturbance-prone locations. Distributed widely worldwide including across North America in the northeast, south, and west, Australia, South America, and Africa.
Urban habitat: Commonly found in damp, disturbed soil, cultivated garden beds, lawns, parks, woods, and roadsides; tolerates dry or wet conditions.
Ecological function: Disturbance-adapted colonizer. Food and habitat for insects and wildlife.
History / human uses: The flowers, stems and leaves of Cardamine hirsuta are edible and are said to taste spicy and are used as an herb or garnish in salads and soups.